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Lagos needs $15Billion for lnfrastructure – Sanwo-Olu

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Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu
Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu
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•LASG holds Investors’ Roundtable, Launches Deal Book

•Gov urges Investors to optimise opportunities in Lagos toward 21st Century Economy

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has disclosed that given the rising population and limited geographical space of the State, Lagos will require about $15 billion over the next five years for infrastructure.

Speaking at the third Lagos Investors’ Roundtable and launching of Deal Book organised by the Office of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Investment, Governor Sanwo-Olu called on investors to optimise the advantages of the opportunities in Lagos State toward the goal of developing a 21st Century economy as projected by his administration.

At the investment roundtable, which was attended by foreign diplomats, members of business communities, captains of industries and members of the State Executive Council, among others, Governor Sanwo-Olu also called for partnership with investors and private sector, saying the implementation of the development strategies of his administration demands partnership and contributions of private investors.

He said: “We strongly believe that the continued growth and success of Lagos is premised on the strength and diversity of our partnerships. It is such strategic partnerships that account for Lagos being by far the leading recipient of local and foreign direct investments in Nigeria. It is estimated that, in the last few years, about 80 percent of the investments into Nigeria, has come into Lagos.

“These investments remain vital to our economic growth and wellbeing, supporting tens of thousands of jobs and livelihoods across the city. This is the reason why a forum like this is so important – as a platform for harmonising our respective visions and targets and agreeing on key actions that will not only strengthen existing investment partnerships but also initiate new ones.”

Governor Sanwo-Olu stressed further that “As a government, we understand the value of these relationships in fostering economic resilience, particularly during times of uncertainty, like this one we are in, marked by the combined effects of a global pandemic, climate change, global inflation, the burden of poverty and social and economic inequality, among others.

“As a low-lying aquatic city with over 22 million citizens, confined to the smallest landmass in Nigeria, Lagos is especially vulnerable to all the challenges of a sprawling, densely populated, climate challenged, fast-growing Megacity.

“We believe that given the rising population and limited geography space that we have, Lagos will indeed require about $15 billion over the next five years on infrastructure alone. $15 billion is about five times the budget that we currently have. Lagos budget is about $3 billion today.”

While assuring investors that Lagos State is open and ready for investments, innovation and collaboration, Governor Sanwo-Olu assured investors and private partners that the State Government will create enabling policies and environment for them to thrive in Lagos and for their investments to be safe and secure, as well as ensuring that innovation thrives.

“Indeed we have a huge responsibility to develop critical hard and soft infrastructure that can act as a catalyst for what you do as investors. All of these we have been doing and will continue to do,” the governor said.

Governor Sanwo-Olu during the event also launched the ‘Lagos Deal Book’, which is a compendium of investment opportunities across the state as well as information about the incentives for making the investments and the processes for doing so.

He said: “I encourage you all to take advantage of the rich information contained in this Deal Book, to guide and inform your decision making. Information, they say, is power, and there is something of value and interest to each and every one of you, inside the compendium.

“I also urge you all to continue to support, partner and collaborate with Lagos State and with one another, to create sustainable economic prosperity that will touch the lives of all Lagosians. I would like to ask you all, to please spread the word; Lagos State is open and ready for investment, innovation, and collaboration.”

Speaking earlier, the Special Adviser to Governor Sanwo-Olu on Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and Investment, Mrs. Solape Hammond, said the roundtable was part of shared aspiration towards making Lagos the most preferred investment destination in the world.

She reassured the investors about the Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration’s determination to institute business-friendly measures to boost investors’ confidence and guarantee trust, adding that her office is working with relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of government to minimise all perceived threats and scale-up strategic benefits.

“It is an incontrovertible fact that Lagos derived its age-long excellence partly from the worthy contribution of private investment to its socio-economic development, hence, the commitment towards creating a conducive atmosphere for private businesses to strive.

“As carefully exemplified by Mr. Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu in his developmental agenda, T.H.E.M.E.S, the utmost goal is to make Lagos the most desirable investment destination in the world. The ability to attract investment remains the hallmark of healthy economies all over the world,” she said.

Also speaking, Commissioners for Transport (Dr. Frederick Oladeinde), Energy (Mr. Lere Odusote), Agriculture (Ms Bisola Olusanya), Tourism, Arts and Culture (Pharm. Uzamat Akinbile-Yusuf), Health (Prof. Akin Abayomi), Special Adviser to the Governor on Works and Infrastructure (Engr. Aramide Adeyoye) and Director-General, Office of Public Private Partnership (Mr. Ope George), who spoke passionately on huge investment opportunities in different sectors in the State and urged investors to tap into them.

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Akpabio’s Comment On N30bn To Govs Misconstrued – Eyiboh

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Senate-President-Godswill-Akpabio
Senate-President-Godswill-Akpabio
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Senate President Godswill Akpabio’s statement that Governors recently received N30billion from the federal government to cushion the effects of hardship was misconstrued, his spokesman, Hon Eseme Eyiboh has said.

Governors Seyi Makinde (Oyo) and Umo Eno (Akwa Ibom) denied receiving such amounts.

Eyiboh, in a statement in Abuja, said the Senate President holds Governors in high esteem.

He said Akpabio urged the “sub-national governments not to be distracted by any misunderstanding of the context and true meaning of the statement.”

The statement reads: “The office of the President of the Senate has been drawn to various misconceptions in the public domain on the statement credited to the President of the Senate in plenary of Wednesday, February 21, 2024, during the presentation of a report of the joint Committees on Finance, Agriculture/Food Sufficiency, Banking and Insurance.

“During the session the President of the Senate commented on the payment of an unverified cumulative sum of about N30billion to the sub-national governments by the Federal Government for various interventions to ameliorate the food situation of our citizens at the sub-national governments.

“The unfortunate conjectures to take away the kernel in the material facts of FAAC payment are rather regretted.

“In considering the well-intended motive of urging State Governments to collaborate with the Federal Government of President Bola Tinubu to facilitate strategic interventions to mitigate the prevailing economic situation in the country remains the underpinning motivation in the comment.

“The President of the Senate is not oblivious to the fact that State governments are functional partners in all the efforts of the current administration of President Bola Tinubu and are also valuable stakeholders in the various legislative engagements of the legislature in creating the nexus between the legislature and the people.

“The President of the Senate has always demonstrated commitment to team building and shall not do less in the circumstance.

“He therefore urges the sub-national governments not to be distracted by any misunderstanding of the context and true meaning of the statement.

“The President of the Senate recognizes and appreciates the current efforts of the governors at ameliorating the adverse effects of the current inclement socio-economic environment and therefore invites more hands on the plow to complement the renewed hope agenda.”

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Hardship: Afenifere Begs Yoruba Race Not To Join Protest Against Tinubu

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The leader of the Pan Yoruba sociopolitical group, Afenifere, Chief Reuben Fasoranti, has appealed to Nigerians, especially from the South West states, against the planned nationwide protest against President Bola Tinubu-led federal government amid the hardship Nigerians are currently experiencing.

Fasoranti who made this appeal, in a statement personally signed by him, lamented over the current economic crisis in the country, describing it as unfortunate, and urging Nigerians to endure the hardship for tomorrow’s prosperity.

The Afenifere leader said, “As the National Leader of Afenifere, and leader of the Yoruba, I address all and sundry today with a deep understanding of the challenges our dear country is going through at this critical time. The outcry over the hardship, hunger, and price hikes is not unexpected.

“However, we must come to terms with the realities of our national challenges, which the present administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is striving to resolve.

“While acknowledging the hardships faced by our people, it is important to recognize that these economic measures, although difficult, are part of a larger strategy aimed at restoring economic prosperity and stability to Nigeria.

“The government’s commitment to implementing these measures is a testament to its dedication to addressing the root causes of our economic challenges, inherited from the ills of the previous years”

He said “As a responsible leader, I appeal to every Yoruba man and woman, young and old, and our fellow citizens across the nationalities, to exercise patience and refrain from engaging in protests or actions that may escalate tensions.

“Understandably, the immediate impact of Tinubu’s economic reforms is challenging to everyone, but it is crucial to give the government the necessary time to realize the intended benefits”

Attributing the current economic hardship to the removal of fuel subsidy and has done great damage to the nation’s economy, saying “It is important to note that the removal of fuel subsidies and the floating of the Naira is not undertaken lightly, as we all know the great damage done to our national prosperity through the nefarious activities of the agents of darkness within the oil and financial sectors.

“These measures by the Federal Government, though painful in the short term, are designed to create a more sustainable economic environment that will benefit us all in the long run. It requires collective understanding and resilience from every citizen as we navigate through these challenging times.

“We cannot afford a preference for the euthanasic approach of painless death of our nation, where we are propped up with loans and subsidies until a total collapse into a failed nation, while we have the opportunity of painful healing through treatment with multiple surgeries that will guarantee not just our survival, but restored health, vigor, and thriving life. We must endure today’s hardship for tomorrow’s prosperity”

He, however, appealed to Nigerians to give Tinubu more time and engage in constructive criticism that can contribute towards the development of the country.

“I implore you to trust in the government’s commitment to the welfare of our nation. Let us engage in constructive dialogue and contribute positively to the ongoing economic reforms.

“Join me in appealing for unity and understanding among our people. Together, we can weather this storm and emerge stronger as a nation.

“I want to assure you as the Leader of Afenifere, that we are actively engaging with the government at different levels to address the concerns of our people. Let us remain steadfast, patient, and united in the face of these challenges, confident that our collective resilience will pave the way for a more prosperous future”
Recall that last Thursday, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, the president-general of Ohanaeze, similarly appealed to the Igbo groups not to protest against the administration of President Bola Tinubu.

The Ohanaeze in a communique issued after an emergency meeting asked the people of the southeast to “invoke the indomitable Igbo spirit of brotherliness and hard work” during the period of economic hardship.

The group urged south-east governors and traditional rulers to take “advantage of the upcoming farming season to catalyze massive agricultural production for sustainable food security” in the zone.

Ohanaeze added that since the apex court in the country has ruled on the 2023 presidential election, the group has decided to support the administration of Tinubu.

“We reviewed with intense passion, the level of unemployment, poverty, hardships, especially the rising cost of goods and services in Nigeria, the rate of depreciation of Nigerian currency, and the excruciating effect on the masses; and reminded Ndigbo that they should quickly readjust themselves to the reality of the times and that the Igbo have passed through the worst of conditions in the past,” the communique reads.

“There is no better time than now to invoke the indomitable Igbo spirit of brotherliness, hard work, ingenuity, wisdom, resilience, inventiveness, perseverance, and capacity to turn adversities into diverse opportunities

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FG To Implement Oronsaye Report

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President Bola Tinubu
President Bola Tinubu
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..To Scrap Many Agencies, Merge Others

In a landmark decision, President Bola Tinubu has approved the implementation of the age-long Oronsanye report.

This is one of the decisions taken at this Monday’s meeting of the federal executive council, at the state house.

The report submitted by the Oronsanye committee under the Goodluck Ebele Jonathan in 2012 has endured successive administrations without implementation.

By Implication, some federal agencies would either be scrapped, merged or relocated.

A committee to be headed by the Secretary to the Government of the federation is to work out the modalities for implementation.

 

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